Could Python supplant Java?

Peter Hansen peter at
Thu Aug 22 02:03:57 CEST 2002

FISH wrote:
> Why are you so against the idea of telling the compiler in advance
> what type of data you are going to hold in a variable?  I mean
> really, what great freedoms do you loose which cannot be regained
> by other (more strucutred) means?
> I know for some small applications it is overkill - but surely any
> serious programmer would want all the help she can get - even if it
> does only catch 1% of bugs.  (Not a scientific figure - more a figure
> of speech :-)

Assuming it is really only 1%, wouldn't you say that if the cost
is 10%, it might not be worth it?  Or maybe it's more like 25%, for
the extra typing and the extra thought required to lay it all out in
advance.  Is it still worth that 1%?

I'd much rather save all the time I do by using Python, and get 
much more done, including writing excellent unit tests (white box)
and acceptance tests (black box), and take the time I saved to 
solve 100% of my bugs (I have very few using TDD with Python) 
rather than do a lot of extra make-work typing just to let the 
compiler point out a few trivial errors to me, making up 1% of 
the total...


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